Burn piles being ignited at Crater Lake


    About 43 acres worth of woody debris along Crater Lake National Park’s North Entrance Road and Highway 62 is being burned, park officials said.

    Park personnel began igniting the burn piles Wednesday, a park news release said.

    “Hopefully we’ll have ignitions done today and tomorrow we’ll be patrolling and mopping up,” said Ed Waldron, park fire management officer.

    The debris piles were created this summer in the fuel break on the west side of the North Entrance Road, which is currently closed for the season. A second smaller set of burn piles — about 750 piles that make for 10 acres or so — located along both sides of a stretch of Highway 62 are slated to begin over the next “days or weeks” once snow or rain dampens the area sufficiently, according to a news release.

    Weather and fire behavior will be monitored for the duration of the burning. A National Weather Service forecast shows chances for rain and snow at the park through at least Monday, with daytime high temperatures in the 40s.

    “Firefighters will patrol and monitor the prescribed fires until they are completely out,” the release said.

    The park’s Rim Drive is closed for the winter, but patrons can enter the park off Highway 62. Roads and trails are expected to remain open during the burns, though motorists should watch for signage that indicates potentially smoky conditions and drive with their headlights on.

    Reach web editor Ryan Pfeil at rpfeil@rosebudmedia.com or at 541-776-4468. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ryanpfeil.

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